From vine to barrel
From their ancient origins to their unique elaboration method, everything about Sherry wines is genuine and authentic. The wines produced in the Jerez region are created using an ancient maturing method which has been passed down over the generations.
The essential feature of this completely unique process, known as criaderas y solera, is that the win which is to be bottled is taken from the butts (barrels) situated at floor level, the solera, which contain the oldest wines. The amount taken out is substituted by an equivalent amount of younger wine from the row above, the first criadera , and this in turn is substituted by the same amount from the row above that, which contains an even younger wine, and so on, the result being exceptional wines which maintain the same quality, year after year.
This dynamic method allows the wines produced in the region of Jerez to undergo an exceptionally lengthy ageing process. In fact, they are amongst the oldest wines in the world, and can be matured for more than 20 or 30 years.
The ageing process for any type of Sherry must be at least two years, although most varieties are aged for much longer. The white grape varieties grown in the region of Jerez can be used to create a surprisingly wide range of types of Sherry with a distinctive palette of colours. Amongst other things, this great diversity depends on the degree to which the wines are exposed to oxygen during the ageing process.
The region uses two different types of ageing processes: oxidative and veil of flor.